The English surname Farley, also found in Ireland, is an habitational name from any of various places named Farley, of which there are examples in Berkshire, Derbyshire, Hampshire, Kent, Somerset, and Staffordshire. The name is derived from the Old English term fearn meaning “fern” and leah meaning “woodland clearing.” When found in Ireland the name is an anglicized form of the Gaelic name Ó Fearghaile from the personal name Fearghal meaning “man of valor.” The name is first recorded in 1189 when William de Ferlecheia is registered in the "Medieval Records of Glastonbury Abbey", Somerset. Thomas Farley, and his wife Jane, were recorded in a Muster of the Inhabitants of Virginia in January 1624; they had arrived on the "Ann" in 1623. Today there are bearers of the name Farley in the United States.
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